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Residential with Skid steer snow blower

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Red Wagon, Nov 25, 2012.

  1. Red Wagon

    Red Wagon Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    Has anybody had any luck building a driveway route from scratch with a skid steer snow blower?
     
  2. BlackIrish

    BlackIrish Senior Member
    Messages: 890

    Yes, but I used a Toolcat with a blower on the front and backblade on the rear.
     
  3. alldayrj

    alldayrj PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,097

    Would need a really tight route but otherwise i don't see why not.. I like it
     
  4. WIPensFan

    WIPensFan PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,487

    It's gonna take longer than it would with a a Snow Bucket or Plow with down pressure. Plus, you'll leave more snow at the garage door, especially on a heavy snow fall.
     
  5. Gr8WhiteNorth

    Gr8WhiteNorth Senior Member
    Messages: 212

    We have a driveway route for a skidsteer with snowblower. It's got a custom mod to make it clear up against garage doors. Basically, it's a hydraulic arm that you lower down with a poly scraper. Works best on 4" or more snowfall events. Anything less and we just send out the machine with bucket to back drag.
     
  6. Gr8WhiteNorth

    Gr8WhiteNorth Senior Member
    Messages: 212

    I should add that our route density is high. No more than a couple of blocks between homes. We have grown to multiple homes on each block. 2 speed machines only
     
  7. MIDTOWNPC

    MIDTOWNPC PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 4,452

    A picture would be awesome :)
     
  8. Gr8WhiteNorth

    Gr8WhiteNorth Senior Member
    Messages: 212

    I'll see what I can dig up tmrw
     
  9. Gr8WhiteNorth

    Gr8WhiteNorth Senior Member
    Messages: 212

    Snow Blower

    Here is the snow blower. We bought it with the 2 CAT track machines last summer.

    We modified the snow blower to be more effective in a residential driveway setting. I was envious of the tractor/inverted blower method used by Neige, etc., but we just can't justify the tractor for the sparse amount of snow we get here in Southern Manitoba and there was nothing on the market that I could purchase. I designed the system and the fabricator we used built it.

    The modifications include re-working the hydraulics and adding the yellow colored arm to scrape/backdrag at garage door or against walls. All of the controls work with the existing CAT joysticks with no additional switches. The controls are complicated because of the number of 2nd functions required, but you can get used to it by the end of the first hour out.

    Since we only went out about 3 times last winter due to record low snow amounts, adjustments and fine-tuning was a long and drawn out process. It took a few different configurations of hoses and cylinders to achieve the desired speed and control of the lift arm.

    The cutting edge is poly to be gentle on customers driveway. We guarantee no scrape marks to our residential customers.

    Brandon-20121129-00108.jpg

    Brandon-20121129-00109.jpg

    IMG-20111105-00170.jpg

    IMG-20111105-00173.jpg
     
  10. Gr8WhiteNorth

    Gr8WhiteNorth Senior Member
    Messages: 212

    So when you approach the property, you turn on the auger and put the blower down on the ground while you blow towards the garage door. The discharge goes to the lawn areas where it won't damage trees and shrubs. Once you reach the garage door, you lower the hydraulic arm and scrape back the 1 or 2ft of snow the auger leaves behind.

    Its much faster to snow blow than using a bucket or blade on larger snow fall events because you only make 1 pass per 7 ft width and there is not enough snow to even notice by the time you are done back dragging it out to the street. With a bucket, you have to make multiple passes because the snow spills out each end and then you are left with a massive pile you have to stack. If you have a year of huge snow volume, you can run out of room to pile on the street side of smaller lawns. Additionally, its a safety issue when the home owner is backing out and the snow pile obstructs view. This is why I looked into the blower option in the first place. Having to go out and push piles on lawns or haul snow from hundreds of residential accounts would have cost a small fortune.
     
  11. blowerman

    blowerman PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,261

    I'm normally supportive of fellow Wisconsinites, but in this case;
    While I have switched to mainly using tractor/blowers, I still own 3 skidloader blowers that we've used for over 12 years.
    For comparison, I do own large buckets for skidloaders and a 9 ft. Snowwolf blade, both never could come close to the speed of a blower so they sit in storage.
    To answer how we deal with the snow in front of the door; typical driveway is 3 passes up, on the third pass up we spin in front of the door almost like a scooping action but you also need to move the shoot and sometimes the reflector as your doing this, moving across the front of door a skilled operator can get within a few inches, instead of backing out on the third pass, they clean up as needed heading down the driveway.
    When using the shoot and deflector, you can (or a good driver can) put snow almost anywhere on the sides of a driveway.
    For viewing, the picture in my signature is of a Bobcat S185 with a 66" blower doing just as posted.
    Don't fool yourself into thinking bigger is better. The smaller blower is what I mainly used over the large skid blowers.
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2012
  12. IMAGE

    IMAGE Sponsor
    Messages: 1,741


    It looks great and I like the idea. I'm just curious, if you guarantee no scrape marks, does that mean you have a poly edge on the blower too? Wouldn't the steel edges or sides of the blower leave scrape marks if you don't have poly edges or shoes?
     
  13. Gr8WhiteNorth

    Gr8WhiteNorth Senior Member
    Messages: 212

    Good eye. We beat that topic to death when during the design and build. After a few failed attempts in making a poly shoe, we just put the steel back on. I haven't noticed any scratches yet, but on exposed aggregate or paver driveways, I will leave the blower slightly off the surface
     
  14. WIPensFan

    WIPensFan PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,487

    That's ok, I'll let it go this time.;)

    Though I have never used a blower on a skid, I have seen it done, videos and in person. I don't know if they were high flow or not. I guess I would have to see it in a side by side comparison to believe it. I know the tractor blowers are much faster, just not sold on the skid steer ones. Over the years I have had many residential drives that aren't condusive to snowblowers. I mean cars in the way, tall privacy hedge plants, fences, L shaped 4 car garages, neighbors yard or house real close, steep slanted one way or another, front walkways you don't want to blow more snow onto, etc... The bucket and plow can pretty much get into any configuration and move snow effectively. I would really like to try a blower just to see how fast it is with heavy snow, I just don't want to rent one.

    I'm not saying you're wrong Blowerman....after all...you are the "Blowerman".Thumbs Up
     
  15. Big Dog D

    Big Dog D PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,134


    Blowerman,

    What types of skids and what brand blowers are you running? I have a Cat 268B and am considering a Cat SR321 for it but am concerned how well the two will pair up. I want to use it for larger walkways as well as blowing back windrows after larger storms at a large scale apartment complex.
     
  16. ducaticorse

    ducaticorse PlowSite.com Addict
    from we
    Messages: 1,426


    That there my friend, is FAHKIN PISSAH!!!
     
  17. JJSLandscape

    JJSLandscape Member
    Messages: 55



    i've got the same blower, actually mine is an sr121 i beleive but thats a brilliant idea for that application. i'd be extremely grateful for some specs and more pictures i'd like to do that to mine
     
  18. jvm81

    jvm81 Senior Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 381

    I have a bobcat skid and blower. Don't use it a lot but it it handy. I use smaller new holland utility
    Tractors with front mount blowers . To me there is no comparison using a blower vs skid and bucket or plow truck. I drive those from place to place. Route is tight. Easy down sidewalks and over all great for driveways. I have a shovel guy that follows up to clean steps, garage doors, entrance doors etc. I would consider a bigger tractor but that limits my use to side walks, etc. I have had rear mount blowers, more power but hated looking back all the time. Made the switch to front mounts.
     
  19. kbobcat

    kbobcat Junior Member
    Messages: 1

    After a few years of having that back drag on the snow blower, have you remodified anything? Has it been working well? I am very interested in getting something set up simalar to what you have done. Do you know of anyone that has made a unit like this at all?